I’m finally getting some separation. Just in time to blow it.
A 10-6 week, including a 3-1 record against MDS on games where we conflicts, has turned a three-game lead into a five-game wedge with three weeks left.
I’m at 131-77 (62.9 percent) for the year, and MDS is at 126-82 (60.5 percent).
We’ve also got a new “best bets” video for your consideration. Last week, I went 2-1 against the spread. MDS was 1-2.
For all picks in all games, scroll away. You’ll see four disagreements.
Chargers at Chiefs
MDS’s take: The Chargers have been at the outskirts of the truly elite all season. That can change with a win at Kansas City. But I don’t see it happening. This Chiefs team is just too good.
MDS’s pick: Chiefs 28, Chargers 27.
Florio’s take: The team with no real home-field advantage still has a shot at home-field advantage throughout the playoffs. Just enough Chiefs are banged up to create a real opening for the Chargers. But the Chiefs have beaten the Chargers nine times in a row, and the Chiefs have Patrick Mahomes and Andy Reid.
Florio’s pick: Chiefs 27, Chargers 24.
Texans at Jets
MDS’s take: Jets quarterback Sam Darnold showed a little bit of promise last week, and the Texans suffered a tough loss. That makes this game just a little more interesting, but I can’t see the Jets making it two in a row.
MDS’s pick: Texans 27, Jets 17.
Florio’s take: Houston picks itself up, dusts itself off. Which is much easier to do when the opponent is the Jets.
Florio’s pick: Texans 23, Jets 10.
Browns at Broncos
MDS’s take: Not exactly a marquee Saturday prime time game, but Baker Mayfield against the Denver defense will make things interesting. I like the Broncos to win a close one.
MDS’s pick: Broncos 23, Browns 20.
Florio’s take: The Browns keep laying the foundation for a special 2019.
Florio’s pick: Browns 27, Broncos 20.
Packers at Bears
MDS’s take: The Bears are about to clinch the NFC North. How many people saw that coming when the Packers beat them in Week One?
MDS’s pick: Bears 28, Packers 20.
Florio’s take: The Packers have been getting plenty of help in their unlikely quest for the playoffs. But they will have a hard time helping themselves.
Florio’s pick: Bears 24, Packers 17.
Lions at Bills
MDS’s take: The Lions’ offense has struggled to complete anything downfield, and the Bills’ defense is strong. I think Buffalo wins a low-scoring game.
MDS’s pick: Bills 14, Lions 13.
Florio’s take: Matt Patricia finishes 3-1 against the division he spent years competing in.
Florio’s pick: Lions 24, Bills 21.
Buccaneers at Ravens
MDS’s pick: Ravens 20, Buccaneers 13.
Florio’s take: The Ravens know they can still win the division — and they probably will.
Florio’s pick: Ravens 24, Buccaneers 16.
Cardinals at Falcons
MDS’s take: The Falcons have been perhaps the NFL’s most disappointing team this season, but even still, they really can’t lose to the Cardinals at home. Can they?
MDS’s pick: Falcons 21, Cardinals 20.
Florio’s take: Less than two months before the Super Bowl will be played in Atlanta, we get this in the same stadium.
Florio’s pick: Falcons 21, Cardinals 13.
Raiders at Bengals
MDS’s take: The Raiders showed last week that they’re playing to win, but I have a hunch that Bengals quarterback Jeff Driskel is going to have a good game against a bad Raiders defense.
MDS’s pick: Bengals 28, Raiders 24.
Florio’s take: The Raiders are determined to screw up their shot at the No. 1 overall pick, and the Bengals just aren’t good.
Florio’s pick: Raiders 20, Bengals 16.
Titans at Giants
MDS’s take: The Giants have played much better over the second half of the season, and I think they’ll keep it going and end the Titans’ playoff hopes.
MDS’s pick: Giants 21, Titans 20.
Florio’s take: The Giants have sparked the kind of late-season run that will make it even harder to draft Eli Manning’s replace, or to even replace him at all. The Titans will do their part to help on both counts.
Florio’s pick: Titans 23, Giants 17.
Dolphins at Vikings
MDS’s take: The Vikings should have a few new wrinkles in their offense this week, and I expect them to make some big plays in the passing game to beat the Dolphins.
MDS’s pick: Vikings 30, Dolphins 20.
Florio’s take: Lose this one, and it’s likely over for Minnesota.
Florio’s pick: Vikings 23, Dolphins 14.
Washington at Jaguars
MDS’s take: Josh Johnson vs. Cody Kessler should be something. I’m not sure what it will be, but it’s something.
MDS’s pick: Jaguars 9, Washington 6.
Florio’s take: Josh Johnson will wish he had stayed in the AAF after this one.
Florio’s pick: Jaguars 24, Washington 10.
Cowboys at Colts
MDS’s take: This is a big one between two teams in the playoff hunt. The Colts need it more, and I think they’ll get the win.
MDS’s pick: Colts 24, Cowboys 23.
Florio’s take: The Cowboys have won enough games to not be facing a “must” win situation. The Colts are. Sometimes, it’s that simple.
Florio’s pick: Colts 24, Cowboys 20.
Seahawks at 49ers
MDS’s take: The Seahawks are cruising toward the playoffs, where they’ll be a dangerous road opponent for an NFC division winner in January.
MDS’s pick: Seahawks 30, 49ers 13.
Florio’s take: The Seahawks will end up as the No. 5 seed, win or lose. That won’t stop them from trying to stomp the 49ers.
Florio’s pick: Seahawks 30, 49ers 17.
Patriots at Steelers
MDS’s take: Both teams are reeling after disappointing losses on Sunday. I trust Bill Belichick more than Mike Tomlin to get his team back on track.
MDS’s pick: Patriots 20, Steelers 17.
Florio’s take: The Steelers are getting the worst possible team at the worst possible time.
Florio’s pick: Patriots 27, Steelers 17.
Eagles at Rams
MDS’s take: Jared Goff has played poorly two weeks in a row, but he should bounce back and keep the Rams in contention for home-field advantage throughout the NFC playoffs.
MDS’s pick: Rams 24, Eagles 20.
Florio’s take: Philly’s slim playoff hopes officially fall to none.
Florio’s pick: Rams 38, Eagles 21.
Saints at Panthers
MDS’s take: The Panthers are collapsing, and the Saints will keep that going.
MDS’s pick: Saints 20, Panthers 10.
Florio’s take: Not long ago, this looked like one of the best games of the year. Now? Not.
Florio’s pick: Saints 30, Panthers 20.